Delta Dental Mount Washington Road Race
Washington Auto Road
20, 2015 ÛÒ 9:00 a.m.
Gray of Colorado Springs shoots for a rare repeat
Eric Blake, defending champ Shannon Payne sidelined
Gutierrez, Gates back to try again
Haefeli aim to continue Colorado streak of success
Notch, N.H. ÛÒ June 17, 2015
Gray of Colorado Springs, Colo., looks to do something no
overall winner of the
Northeast Delta Dental Mount Washington Road Race has done
in more than a
decade in this SaturdayÛªs 55th
of the grueling 7.6-mile foot race up the Mt. Washington
31, grabbed his first Northeast Delta Dental Mount
Washington Road Race title
last year after several near misses and will attempt to
become the first repeat
winner of the race since Simon Gutierrez doubled up in 2002
the womenÛªs side, a trio of runners and former winners from
Colorado ÛÒ Kim
Dobson, Brandy Erholtz and Laura Haefeli ÛÒ aim to continue
dominance at the front of the pack. Shannon Payne of
Colorado Springs won last
yearÛªs race, but is out with an injury. A runner from
Colorado has led the
women to the top of the highest peak in the Northeast each
of the last four
years and six of the last seven.
are plentiful for the race that features some 1,300 runners
of all abilities ÛÒ
including many of the best mountain runners in the country
as well as an
international flavor ÛÒ ready to tackle the changing and
challenging terrain and
weather conditions of Mount Washington. The race kicks off
at 9 a.m. at the
base of the Mt. Washington Auto Road.
Gray, 31, who pulled away from defending champion and
three-time winner Eric
Blake in the second half of last yearÛªs race, capture
Blake on the sidelines – he had to withdraw late because of
an injury and will
be inducted into the Mount Washington Road Race Hall of Fame
after the race – who
will step up to challenge Gray?
Rickey Gates, 34, another Coloradoan and a late entry? Gates
will race in his first
Mount Washington since 2012. He won the race in 2009 and
different runners have finished the race in under one hour,
including Gates and
won last year in a time of 59:09, 52 seconds in front of
Blake. Gates clocked
in at 59:58 in his 2009 victory.
addition, the last three winners have broken the one-hour
mark. It is the first
time in history that three consecutive winners have been
under an hour and only
once before had two races in a row been won in under that
for other contenders, how about Zach Miller, 26, of Manitou
Springs, Colo.? He
was fourth in a time of 1:02:56 last year in his Northeast
Delta Dental Mount
Washington Road Race debut.
49, and out of Colorado Springs, is a three-time Mount
Washington winner and finished
sixth last year and is entered. Peter Maksimow, 36, of
Manitou Springs, was
seventh last year and is back and he and Gutierrez will try
to help maintain their
stateÛªs mountain running supremacy in New Hampshire. Five of
the top seven male
finishers in last yearÛªs race were from Colorado.
had finished runner-up in the two races prior to his win and
was third a couple
of times and fourth once before that.
knew there was going to be a year he eventually was going to
win it,Û Blake
said. ÛÏJoeÛªs tough to beat. He has a good combination of
both strength and
speed. He has solid track times and has run some good half
marathons on the road and heÛªs a good climber, too.Û
on the menÛªs side include Luca Cagnati of Italy, a member of
the 2014 Italian
Mountain Running Team, and Andy Wacker of Boulder, Colo.
Wacker was third
behind the second-place Gray in the Vail Pass Half marathon
earlier this month
and second to Gray the next day in a 10K, also at Vail.
the local side, can Justin Freeman, 38, of New Hampton,
N.H., three-peat? HeÛªs
won the Crossan Cup as the top menÛªs finisher from New
Hampshire on the menÛªs
side the last two years and three of the last four. HeÛªs
been in the top 10
overall each of the three times he has won it. One of his
rivals for Crossan
honors is his brother, Kris, 34. Kris was tops from NH in
2010 and was third
winners of five of the last seven Northeast Delta Dental
Mount Washington Road
Race womenÛªs races are in the field, setting up what should
be an interesting
(2008 and 2009) and Dobson (2011 and 2012) each won
consecutive races and
Haefeli won in 2013. Erholtz owns the fastest times of the
threesome with a
1:10:53 in 2009 and 1:11:08 in 2008. They are the fifth and
sixth fastest times
in race history.
best is a 1:12:11 from 2011, the 10th fastest time ever in
the race. Haefeli
won in 2013 in 1:18:05.
was third last year behind Payne and ItalyÛªs Valentina
Bellotti in 1:15:38.
Sandahl, 34, of Bow, N.H. and Larisa Dannis, 27, of Mill
Valley, Calif. aim to
move up after finishing fifth and sixth last year. They are
also the last two
winners of the womenÛªs Crossan Cup.
was nine seconds out of fourth place with a time of 1:17:21
last year in her
first Mount Washington race. Dannis was running out of
Manchester, N.H., two
years ago when she was the first New Hampshire finisher and
seventh overall in
has become a force in long distance running. She won the
Championship last year and was second in the Western States
Ferreira, 33, of Concord, N.H., is a world class triathlete,
contender for a top spot. She was seventh in the Northeast
Delta Dental Mount
Washington Road Race in 2010.
New England runners looking for top 10 spots include Abbey
Gosling Wood of
Laconia, N.H.; Abby Mahoney of Holyoke, Mass.; Ashley Krause
Mass.; and Regina Loicano of Gloucester, Mass.
another note, George Etzweiler of State College, Pa., is
Etzweiler, 95, was a late scratch from last yearÛªs event
because of illness.
His son Larry, 69, is also signed up.
The Northeast Delta Dental Mount Washington Road Race begins
at the Auto Road
base on Route 16 north of Pinkham Notch and climbs to the
6288-foot summit at
an average grade of 12 percent and a net altitude gain of
4650 feet. The
runners battle not only each other but the sheer force of
gravity and Mt.
WashingtonÛªs famously severe winds.
Former six-time World Mountain Champion Jonathan Wyatt of
New Zealand holds the
menÛªs course record at Mount Washington: 56 minutes 41
seconds, set in
2004. The womenÛªs record was set in 2010 by the 23-year-old
runner Shewarge Amare, who made the ascent in one hour eight
Northeast Delta Dental has sponsored the race up the
historic Mt. Washington Auto
Road since 2001. The dental insurance
company, headquartered in Concord, N.H., with sales offices
in Saco, Maine, and
Burlington, Vt., provides dental benefits to more than
800,000 people in Maine,
New Hampshire, and Vermont, including individuals and
organizations of all sizes. Northeast
Delta DentalÛªs President & CEO, Tom Raffio, has run the
race in a personal
best of 1:50:51. In 2012, Northeast Delta Dental increased
its already strong
support for the event, making it officially the Northeast
Delta Dental Mount
Washington Road Race.
of all proceeds from the race will be donated to Coos County
Services for their oral health programs. Based in nearby
Berlin, N.H., this
community-based organization provides innovative,
health care and social services to everyone, regardless of
information about the race is available at http://mountwashingtonroadrace.com/.